Sunday, April 27, 2008

You Wanna Have a Debate...OK

Coming off a 9% win in Pennsylvania, Hillary Clinton had this to say: "I hope we will be able to have a good old-fashioned Lincoln-Douglas debate right here in Indiana, so that you can see for yourself to make the decision about who our next President should be." Basically, Clinton wants a 90-minute debate without a moderator, which she likens to the Lincoln-Douglas debates back in 1858.

I read that thinking that she really had no idea what debates were like then. So I researched it. On Wikipedia: "Each debate had this format: one candidate spoke for an hour, then the other candidate spoke for an hour and a half, and then the first candidate was allowed a half hour "rejoinder." The candidates alternated speaking first."

As I remember being told in history class, the candidates would remember pages and paragraphs of rhetoric and recite them. Key word being: recite. As in from memory. Imagine going to a debate nowadays and hearing one of the candidates talk for an hour straight. I doubt any of the candidates could do that today, nor would we want them to. I suppose we're all too used to sound bites nowadays.

After all that, does Clinton even know that Lincoln is from Illinois, not Indiana?

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